Denmark’s story so far
We are five games into to the Denmark‘s world cup qualification campaign and things are looking good for Morten Olsen and his troops. Despite being handed some fairly tough opponents in Group A such as World Cup semi-finalists Portugal and Sweden the Danes have made fantastic progress so far.
Denmark’s campaign started at the Puskás Ferenc Stadion in Budapest where Olsen’s men failed to break down a tough Hungarian outfit captained by Fulham’s Zoltan Gera. Four days later Denmark faced arguably their toughest test in Group a when they travelled to Lisbon to meet Portugal. Manchester United‘s Nani fired the home side into the lead three minutes before the half-time whistle but Denmark pulled level courtesy of Arsenal‘s striker Nicklas Bendtner. The goalscoring continued to be dominated by Premier League players when Howard Webb gave Portugal a penalty and Deco gladly swept the ball past Stephen Anderson in the Denmark goal. Portugal looked like they would be claiming all three points with just 4 minutes left on the clock but Olsen’s men produced a stirring fightback with goals from Juventus’s Christian Poulsen and Werder Bremen’s Daniel Jensen to claim all three points in injury time. After the game a obviously delighted Morten Olsen said “ This was a dream scenario. I didn’t think we had it in us physically to come back from 1-0 and then 2-1, but everybody delivered a fantastic performance.”
Next up for Denmark was a home game against Malta. Denmark were labelled as huge favourites and did not disappoint with a brace from Soren Larsen and a penalty from Dan Agger sealing a 3-0 victory. Denmark were sitting pretty at the end of 2008 with an impressive seven points from their first three games, a return that would please DBU officials and the Danish public alike.
Denmark’s first World Cup Qualifier in 2009 was the return game against the Maltese in Ta’Qali. In front of a disapointing crowd of just 6,235 Denmark sealed another comfortable 3-0 win over Malta. Soren Larsen impressed again with another two goals and Copenhagens Morten Nordstrand scored the third. Four days later Albania were the visitors to the Parken Stadium and Denmark sealed their third consecutive 3-0 win and their fourth win in a row. Ex-Fulham man Leon Andreasen bagged Denmark’s first after 31 minuites and just 6 minuites later the lead was doubled by hitman Soren Larsen who scored his fifth goal of the qualification campaign. With 10 minuites left on the clock Christian Poulsen popped up to make it 3-0.
This is how the group table looks so far :
- Denmark 5 13
- Hungary 6 13
- Portugal 5 6
- Sweden 4 6
- Albania 7 6
- Malta 7 1
Denmark have made a great start to their qualification campaign and they are sitting pretty at the top of Group A with 13 points from just 5 games they are level on points with Hungary who they have a game in hand over and 7 points clear of the chasing pack. Next up for the Danes are Sweden in Stockholm, a game that will be refereed by Englishman Mike Riley. If Denmark keep up their good form they are shoe-ins for qualification for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.